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Author Topic: Update on Waste Motor Oil Fuel  (Read 2313 times)
Scott Bennett
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« on: May 16, 2012, 04:57:38 AM »

I've been posting a lot lately in a somewhat disorderly fashion, but I know some have been interested in our use of WMO as fuel. Since July of last year we've driven nearly 3000 miles on a blend of WMO and diesel with a little gas thrown in for thinning. Up until this most recent trip from FL to MI we have been running on it without problems. Our problems on this trip exhibited frequent bouts of tons of black/grey smoking and loss of power to the point where climbing a gentle slope dropped us to 30 mph. This issue was intermittent and cleared up every so often. Changed fuel filters. Seemed to help for a small span of time. Thinking it was the oil too thick and not thinned enough we put 75 gallons of straight diesel in. Helped a bunch, but we are near the end of our troublesome tank of fuel and finding it is still occasionally smoking losing power. So, I'm convinced I have some sludge in the bottom of the tank left over from my initial WMO experiment which involved not filtering it much ad just dumping in. I learned my lesson and have been centrifuging and dewatering the oil since last year, but the sludge from my original oil use is likely still in there. I have an aux tank so I'm really not wanting to remove the tank. Anyone have any suggestions on a cleaning chemical I can put it and the drain from the fuel drain? Moral of the story, coach will run on CLEAN and sludge free motor oil but don't ever just throw it in the tank without proper processing.




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Scott & Heather
1984 MCI9 6V92-turbo with 9 inch roof raise & conversion in progress.
http://www.scottmichaelbennett.com/p/our-bus.html
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dukegrad98
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« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2012, 06:12:08 AM »

Interesting update, thanks for the info.  I'm glad to hear you have improved your filtering techniques -- that makes all the difference.  I've never experimented much with fuel blending, but do have a lot of natural oil and homebrew biodiesel experience in other vehicles.  My DieselCraft centrifuge takes everything down to sub-micron levels, and I found that with proper filtering I could run a fuel filter to its full life expectancy without fouling it.  Alternative fuels are always a contentious subject, but I've had a lot of fun and successful experiments over the last 100k+ miles with the stuff.  It remains to be determined what I'll do with my bus once the rebuild/remodel is complete. 

As for your tank...  Do you have access to any B100 fuel?  That stuff is an amazing solvent.  A few gallons in there swishing around would almost surely dissolve any residue from your bad blend, and then you could drain out the bottom.  Petrofuels will probably work as well, just takign a bit longer.

Good luck and keep us posted!

Cheers, John
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bevans6
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« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2012, 06:15:45 AM »

If you think there is water in there, probably methyl hydrate would be a good place to start.  Drain or pump out the fuel residue, pour in several gallons, find a way to agitate, pump it out again, repeat.  The alcohol will absorb the water.  I can't think of anything it would hurt in the tank, but I would think twice about using it to flush the lines.

Brian

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1980 MCI MC-5C, 8V-71T from a M-110 self propelled howitzer
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Scott Bennett
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« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2012, 06:42:14 AM »

John: excuse my horrific ignorance but is b100 biodiesel? And where would I presumably get the stuff? It may be exactly what I'm looking for.

Brian: I'm leaning the coach today and draining the tank but I don't think I have a ton of water in there. Without pulling the tank I have no way of agitating. Unless we can special order a small
Localized earthquake Smiley I'm more concerned with sludge than water at the moment since I'm pretty sure we have dewatered very well including a final step of using Water-block filters


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Scott & Heather
1984 MCI9 6V92-turbo with 9 inch roof raise & conversion in progress.
http://www.scottmichaelbennett.com/p/our-bus.html
˙ǝɯoɔlǝʍ suoıʇɐuop ˙snq ʍǝu ɐ pǝǝu ʎlqɐqoɹd ll,ǝʍ 'sıɥʇ pɐǝɹ uɐɔ noʎ ɟı
Oonrahnjay
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« Reply #4 on: May 16, 2012, 06:44:47 AM »

    Scott, I'm sure that you don't want to hear somebody "bashing" the idea of using WMO as a fuel, and I don't mean to come off that way, but you may be wrong that it's "impurities in the WMO that you can filter/centrifuge out" that is the problem.  Motor oil is made to be viscous and "sticky" and to lubricate; fuel oil is made to be easily circulated, clean and lubricate fuel system components (depending on the vehicle design, to a more or lesser degree), and burn clean.  It *may* be that no matter how clean you get the WMO, you're still going to build up this sludge depending on time, distance, conditions etc.

    I know that you're "saving a lot of money" by running WMO, but the price of filters being changed often and repeatedly, the price of cleaning or rebuilding (let's not even think of replacing) injector pumps and/or injectors, the price of fiddling with the system parked in the back lot of the Flying J when you'd rather be moving down the road, and the price of your time to clean and flush your tank, or the price to replace or rebuild other engine components may sure add up fast to wipe out those savings.

    I HOPE that you can cheaply and easily treat the WMO and it works OK from here on and it never gives you a moment's problem and you realize all the savings that you can off this system.  But I fear that it's not always going to work out that way.  Good luck with it.

(11 year owner of a VW TDI -- *ALL* attempts to use "alternative fuels" have turned around and bit me in the b*tt; and I never even got out to the 'fringes' like "home-brew bio-diesel" and "WMO")
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Bruce H; Wallace (near Wilmington) NC
1976 Daimler (British) Double-Decker Bus; 34' long
6-cyl, 4-stroke, Leyland O-680 engine

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Geoff
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« Reply #5 on: May 16, 2012, 07:24:55 AM »

Using waste motor oil in your fuel tank is not a good idea.  Think of it-- detergent motor oil hold dirt particles in suspension in the oil, that is why it turns black.  What you are doing is running dirt through your engine when you dump it in the tank.  There is no savings in dumping 8-10 gallons of dirty oil in a 100 gallon fuel tank.  Now you know.  You need a real DD 2 stroke mechanic to diagnois your problems.

--Geoff
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Geoff
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« Reply #6 on: May 16, 2012, 07:51:58 AM »

Each injector has a filter I have changed those on a friends bus 3 times with him trying to save money on fuel mixing he does his own now I quit lol,Scott you gave it a good shot I will hand that to you
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thomasinnv
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« Reply #7 on: May 16, 2012, 08:56:54 AM »

Cliff mentioned filters in each injector. As a matter of information for myself and anyone else who might not know, where in the injector is that filter located? Is it as simple as pulling off a fuel line and removing a nut and filter like the old carburetors used to have? Scott, with all the junk you've run through that engine, it might be good insurance for you to do that.
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There are three kinds of people in this world....those that make things happen, those that watch things happen, and those that just wonder what the heck is happening. Which one are you?

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« Reply #8 on: May 16, 2012, 09:14:38 AM »

The primary filter on the Detroit engine is a 20 micron filter, the second filter is a 10 micron filter.  The screens in the injector body (located just under the fittings that the fuel lines attach to) are just a steel mesh which seem to be there just in case metal (like from a failing injector) trys to get through.
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Geoff
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Scott Bennett
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« Reply #9 on: May 16, 2012, 10:48:27 AM »

Thanks for all the great discussion. I'm still not convinced we can't run WMO in a mechanical two stroke but I do know you have to filter it really well. My first batch had sludge and that might be what ruined me. Just picked up 15 gallons of B99 straight soy. Tank is drained completely and ready for the bio diesel. This stuff will clean things good but I can't leave it in there for long. It eats rubber for lunch!! Hoping to flush the system and then fill er up with pump diesel today and change fuel filters once again and hopefully she will be good to go. Again, I still think the WMO blending can work. But I am through experimenting with the coach as will move onto a car or truck with much less at stake. Hopefully she runs better tomorrow. If not, I'm in trouble.


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Scott & Heather
1984 MCI9 6V92-turbo with 9 inch roof raise & conversion in progress.
http://www.scottmichaelbennett.com/p/our-bus.html
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« Reply #10 on: May 16, 2012, 10:54:48 AM »

Geoff most of the blender do not run the 10 and 20 micron filters then they replace the lines with rubber that come apart stopping the injector filters and fwiw I use the stone type not the metal screens

good luck
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« Reply #11 on: May 16, 2012, 11:17:35 AM »

Geoff most of the blender do not run the 10 and 20 micron filters then they replace the lines with rubber that come apart stopping the injector filters and fwiw I use the stone type not the metal screens

good luck

I've never dealt with waste oil or veggie oil systems but if they have to remove the factory filters for the engine they are in trouble.
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Geoff
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« Reply #12 on: May 16, 2012, 11:28:43 AM »

The 4 or 5 I know use a 30 micron on both filters they tell me they do that because of having to change the filters every day or so not my cup of tea the stuff eats up hoses 
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dukegrad98
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« Reply #13 on: May 16, 2012, 11:41:13 AM »

Sorry to be slow responding...  Yes, B100 is straight biodiesel.  (B20 is 20% biodiesel, 80% petro diesel, and so forth.)  You say you got some B99 "straight soy."  I don't know what that means.  Biodiesel is not vegetable oil -- it is methyl esters, chemically derived from oils such as soybean oil.  Anyway, veg oil will help clean things up, but far more slowly than FAME (fatty acid methyl esters = most biodiesel).  I'm hoping you actually got B99.  

The comments about rubber are correct -- biodiesel is hard on certain types of material.  If you're going to be running most sorts of alternative fuels with any regularity, you'll want to replace your soft fuel lines, seals, o-rings, etc. with as much Viton as possible.  The rubber deterioration is a process that occurs over time, though aged lines will fail much earlier than newer ones.  Most of the time it won't cause you anything worse than a plugged filter or a fuel leak.  In my systems, I have always added filtration -- never taken it away.  The alt fuel passed through a dedicated filter, then also through the standard OEM filter(s), before injection.  Again, proper filtration should happen before the fuel ever goes in the tank.  As a point of reference, my primary fuel experimentation was with veg oil on a 1998 Mercedes E-class (210k+ miles), and with ASTM-quality homebrewed biodiesel in a VW Touareg V10TDI (105k+ miles) -- not counting various farm tractor equipment, generators, etc.

Good luck with the tank cleanout.  Keep a few filter elements handy and keep us posted.

Cheers, John
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Ralph7
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« Reply #14 on: May 16, 2012, 01:57:12 PM »

    If you have the 35 gallon aux tank it has 2 large metal lines under the bus connecting the 2 tanks. So it will take several gallons of fuel just to fill them, even IF you drain the main/aux than fuel/sludge remains in these lines. mine is a mc-8 with 179 gallon, total.
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